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Martínez scores in stoppage time, rallies NYCFC to victory over Charlotte

Kevin O'Toole NYCFC Kevin O'Toole - Getty Images

NEW YORK (AP) — Alonso Martínez scored in the third minute of second-half stoppage time and New York City FC rallied to beat Charlotte FC 2-1 at Yankee Stadium on Saturday night.

Martínez used a crossing pass from Kevin O'Toole to send a right-footed shot from the center of the box to the bottom left corner of the net. It was the second goal of the season for Martínez, who subbed in for Mounsef Bakrar in the 82nd minute.

New York City (4-4-2) beat Charlotte (3-5-2) for the first time after entering play with a 0-4-1 record in the series.

Charlotte raced off to a 1-0 lead in the 3rd minute when Kerwin Vargas scored with a right-footed shot from the left side of the box to the bottom left corner of the net. Nikola Petkovic, a 21-year-old midfielder, notched his first career assist on Vargas' second goal of the season. It was the fifth appearance and second start for Petkovic.

New York City pulled even at halftime on goal by Keaton Parks in the 41st minute. Parks took a crossing pass from Julián Fernández off a set piece to send a header from the center of the box to the top left corner for his first netter this season.

Matt Freese, coming off back-to-back clean sheets, finished with three saves for New York City. Kristijan Kahlina saved five shots for Charlotte.

Charlotte has yet to win on the road this season and was coming off its first home loss, a 3-0 setback at the hands of Minnesota United that ended a 14-match unbeaten stretch at home in all competitions dating to last season. First-year manager Dean Smith's club beat NYCFC 1-0 at home to open the season.

NYCFC was coming off back-to-back 2-0 victories over the New England Revolution and D.C. United. The club played to two straight draws before that after dropping four of five matches to begin the season under third-year manager Nick Cushing.

Charlotte returns home to play the Portland Timbers on Saturday. New York City will host the Colorado Rapids on Sunday.


AP soccer: and